White Trinitarian Pentecostals
White Trinitarian Pentecostals
Current address not obtained for this edition.
During the early twentieth century, American Indians increasingly settled into the city environment. By 1945, 8,000 had settled in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area in Minnesota. In that year a group of Indians organized the American Indian Mission. In 1956 the mission became the American Indian Evangelical Church, and Iver C. Grover (a Chippewa) was elected president. He was joined by seven others. In 1959 a committee on ordination was appointed to facilitate the development of an Indian ordained ministry, and four men were ordained.
Similar to fundamental evangelicalism, the doctrinal statement of the church begins with the Apostles’Creed and moves on to affirm the Trinity, the divinity of Jesus, and the conscious suffering of the wicked. Baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper are practiced. The polity is congregational, but the pastor is viewed as the spiritual overseer of the congregation.
PO Box 406, Maryville, IL 62062
Roy John Turner (1880–1945) and his wife Blanche A. Turner became Pentecostals in 1916. Dr. Turner was a medical doctor and his wife a nurse, and they continued to function as medical professionals while leading prayer meetings. Following a revival campaign in 1918 by evangelist Mrs. Maria B. Woodworth-Etter (1844–1924), a church was formed in New Baltimore. In 1923 Dr. Turner was ordained and became pastor of the congregation. The old opera house in New Baltimore, Michigan, was purchased and remodeled as Bethel Temple. From 1938 to 1940 Turner served as an executive with the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel; the congregation in New Baltimore remained independent. Finally in 1940, the Turners left the Foursquare Gospel and the Anchor Bay Evangelistic Association (ABEA) was formed and incorporated. After the Turners’ deaths, they were succeeded by their daughter, Lucy Evelyn Turner Iske.
The Association describes itself as a fellowship of independent, Full Gospel, Charismatic and Pentecostal people interested in providing a structured fellowship to serve churches, pastors, evangelists, missionaries, and all other ministries of the five-fold calling according to Ephesians 4:11–12. It provides licensing and ordination credentials to qualified individuals. The ABEA offers income tax non-profit status to qualifying churches and ministries under its IRS 501 c (3) group exemption. Additionally, the Association conducts a Bible correspondence course and provides seminars.
The doctrine of the ABEA resembles that of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel.
Mission work is conducted in Belize, Haiti, Nigeria, Zambia, Sri Lanka, China, the Middle East, Lithuania, Brazil, El Salvador, Ecuador, Jamaica, Spain, Finland, Thailand, Russia, South Korea, American Samoa, Turkey, the Philippines, South India, West Africa, Indonesia, and Mexico. The church is a member of the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America. It holds an annual convention, videos and photographs of which are available on the ABEA’s website.
In 2008 the ABEA reported having several hundred members in the United States and thousands worldwide.
Alpha Bible College and Seminary, Bryan, Ohio.
The Anchor, published quarterly.
Anchor Bay Evangelistic Association (ABEA). www.abea.cc.
119-2340 Pegasus Way NE, Calgary, AB T2E 8M5
The Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada was founded in 1921 by evangelist Franklin Small (b. 1873). As a young man, Small had been healed by the prayer of a visiting clergyman. Several years later, in Winnipeg, he heard Rev. A. H. Argue (1868–1959) preach. Argue had just returned from Chicago where he had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues. Eventually Small was also baptized. In 1912, when Argue left for Los Angeles, Small took over his pulpit. Small went to Los Angeles in 1913 and was present at the famous camp meeting at Arroyo Seco at which the controversy over baptism in the name of Jesus (rather than the trinitarian formula of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) emerged. Initially unimpressed with the new teaching, Small did not consider and accept it until later that year when he heard R. E. McAleister (1880–1953) preach the “Jesus Only” doctrine at a convention in Winnipeg. Two years later he was finally baptized in that manner.
In 1921 a conference was called by a number of those associated with the movement of the great Pentecostal revival, to establish an identity for fellowship and ministry. As a result of theological differences concerning the doctrine of the Godhead between the early leaders of the Pentecostal movement, Small formed the Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada, with headquarters in Winnipeg. Small was elected as the first moderator.
In 1953 the Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada, Inc., and the Evangelical Churches of Pentecost, together with their colleges, amalgamated under the name of Apostolic Church of Pentecost (ACOP). Amalgamation brought about an emphasis on local church autonomy and the Grace of God. The doctrinal statement of faith was changed to reflect the nature of ACOP in Canada, and conferences were held to debate such issues as oneness/trinity, premillennialism, amillennialism, and church government.
ACOP’s mission is to be an international network of ministers and churches, providing fellowship, encouragement and accountability in the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.
ACOP affirms the belief in the verbal inspiration of the Bible, the grace of God, water baptism by immersion, the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the personal return of Jesus Christ for his church. The church exists to assist ministers, local churches, missionaries, and other evangelistic ministers at home and abroad. There is a strong belief in the autonomy of the local church along with a firm belief in accountability to leadership in the organization. ACOP recognizes the whole Body of Christ and that God has called its members to work together with those who know the Lord Jesus Christ as personal savior. ACOP has been primarily a force in Western Canada but has been growing in Central and Eastern Canada, with one of its largest districts in Atlantic Canada. Its Orphan Care Ministry works with communities in Malawi and Zimbabwe to care for impoverished and orphaned children, with projected expansion into Zambia. Leaders from across Canada attend an annual leadership retreat in Alberta; the church also has a biennial conference in even-numbered years.
In 2002 ACOP reported approximately 24,000 members in Canada, with 450 ministers and 153 churches. A sister organization, Apostolic Church of Pentecost of the USA, has begun to establish churches in the United States.
Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada. www.acop.ca.
Larden, Robert A. Our Apostolic Heritage. Calgary, AL: Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada, 1971.
Wegner, Linda. Streams of Grace: A Historical Account of the Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada. Edmonton, AB: New Leaf Works, 2006.
335 W 10th St., Baxter Springs, KS 66713
In 1898 the Rev. Charles Fox Parham (1873–1929) left the Methodist Episcopal Church and established a home for divine healing in Topeka, Kansas. That same year he began to publish a periodical, Apostolic Faith, and two years later opened Bethel Bible College. It was at Bethel that Agnes Ozman (1870–1937) had the initial experience of speaking in tongues, an event from which the modern Pentecostal movement is dated. After Mrs. Ozman’s experience and its acceptance by others, Parham began to spread the word of modern Pentecostalism in Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Texas. In 1905 he established a Bible school in Houston, Texas. Among those who attended was William J. Seymour (1870–1922), a black holiness preacher affiliated with the Church of God (Anderson, Indiana), who related the experience at Azusa Street, Los Angeles, California.
Parham is hardly mentioned in pentecostal history after 1906. The split between him and the emerging leadership of the movement began toward the end of that year when he arrived in Los Angeles to observe firsthand the revival about which he had read. He did not like what he saw. He felt that the revival had taken on elements of fanaticism and was quick in his words of reproof. The disagreement led to his immediate split with Seymour and the leaders of the revival in southern California. Then early in 1907 he also resigned his role as Projector of the Apostolic Faith Movement, as a means of opposing the spirit of leadership and the attempts to organize the movement.
Returning to the East and Midwest, he took up his ministry and continued to preach. However, he was soon faced with accusations of scandalous personal behavior, which further ruined his reputation within the movement. Though he remained active until his death, his efforts were cut off from the movement as a whole. Those who received his ministry were eventually consolidated in a very loose fellowship centered on Baxter Springs, Kansas. The Apostolic Faith was not incorporated until 1976. No membership records have ever been kept, but there is a directory of churches and ministers.
In 1950 Baxter Springs also became the permanent site chosen for the group’s Bible college. Following Parham’s direction, the college charges no tuition, but operates on a freewill offering plan. No salary is paid to the faculty, who are also supported by freewill offerings.
Beliefs of the Apostolic Faith are similar to those of the Assemblies of God, and include a strong emphasis on the Bible, which, as the inspired word of God without error, contains the revelation of God’s will for the salvation of all, and the divine and final authority for all Christian fact and life. There are areas of legitimate disagreement, such as baptism, predestination, and end-times, for which agreement is not necessary for salvation. No collections are taken, the ministry being supported by tithes. Organization is informal and congregational. There is a seven-person board of trustees that oversees the Bible college.
No membership records are kept by the Apostolic Faith. These are an estimated 10,000 adherents. In 1988 there were approximately 100 churches and 140 ministers.
Apostolic Faith Bible College Baxter Springs, Kansas.
Online instruction and degrees are available from www.apostolicbiblecollege.org.
Apostolic Faith Report, monthly. Some issues downloadable from originalapostolicfaith.org.
Apostolic Faith Bible College. www.apostolicbiblecollege.org.
Carothers, W. F. The Baptism with the Holy Ghost. Zion City, IL: The Author, 1907.
Goff, James R. Fields White unto Harvest: Charles F. Parham and the Missionary Origins of Pentecostalism. Thesis, University of Arkansas, Fayettesville, 1987.
Parham, Charles F. A Voice of One Crying in the Wilderness. Baxter Springs, KS: Apostolic Faith Bible College, 1910.
Parham, Sarah E. The Life of Charles F. Parham. Joplin, MO: Hunter Printing Company, 1930.
PO Box 2089, Stafford, TX 77497
The Association of Vineyard Churches was formed in 1986 but dates to an earlier Bible study group in Yorba Linda, California, formed in 1978 by John Wimber (1934–1998). The original group of approximately 150 affiliated with Calvary Chapel Church, an evangelical church in Costa Mesa, California, which had developed a number of affiliates throughout the United States. After a brief period of association, Wimber felt that his work, which included an emphasis upon the manifestation of the gifts of the Spirit to all age groups, was distinct from that of Calvary Chapel.
Closely approaching Wimber’s perspective was the Vineyard Christian Fellowship, a congregation that had originated from a Bible study group formed by Kenn Gullikson in 1974. In 1982 Wimber changed his congregation’s name to Vineyard Christian Fellowship of Yorba Linda. The following year he moved it to Anaheim, California, and within a short time more than 4,000 were attending Sunday services. By 1992 more than 6,000 attended regularly. Several other congregations merged with the two Vineyard fellowships, and Vineyard Ministries International was created to direct the outreach of the movement (Wimber’s international and interdenominational outreach). Wimber became the object of much media attention, especially after his being asked to teach a course at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, concerning divine healing. In the wake of the publicity, the movement grew rapidly as both independent pastors and congregations, at first mostly in southern California, affiliated. However, the movement lacked a structure to deal with the increased size and geographic spread of the movement. The church needed a means to ordain pastors and credential churches and ministers. In 1986 leaders in the movement organized the Association of Vineyard Churches.
The churches affiliated with the association are evangelical in theology, with a distinct emphasis upon the ministry of the gifts of the Spirit and a strong focus on church growth and evangelism. There are eight U.S. Vineyard regions, each being a cluster of churches grouped together by relationship and location facilitated by an Area Pastoral Care Leader (APCL). The APCLs work together with the Regional Overseer (RO) to provide leadership and encouragement to the Vineyard churches. Berten Waggoner now serves as the national director and president of the Association of Vineyard Churches.
The Association asserts that the Bible is the final authority in matters of faith and practice, and is the basis for the Vineyard Statement of Faith, a 12-point doctrinal statement that may be downloaded from the association’s website. A collection of theological and philsophical statements is also available.
In 2007 there were more than 1,500 Vineyard churches worldwide.
Vineyard Leadership Institute provides two-year programs for local Vineyard churches.
Vineyard Bible Institute (www.vineyardbi.org) is an Internet-based distance-education program for lay leaders.
Cutting Edge, quarterly. • Emerge, online publication available in PDF format from www.vineyardusa.org.
Association of Vineyard Churches. www.vineyardusa.org.
Loftness, John. “A Sign for Our Times!” People of Destiny Magazine 3, no. 4 (July/August), 1985.
Nerheim, Oywind. Church Conflict: The Pastoral Overseer’s Authority Base in a Relationship Based Church Movement Like the Vineyard. Th.M. dissertation. Pasadena, CA: Fuller Theological Seminary: 2000.
Wimber, Carol. John Wimber. London: Hodder & Stoughton Religious, 1999.
Wimber, John, with Kevin Springer. Power Evangelism. Praise Offerings. Anaheim, CA: Vineyard Christian Fellowship, 1977.
2919 SW 312 Pl., Federal Way, WA 98023-7860
The Bethel Temple traces its beginnings to 1914, when William Henry Offiler, an Englishman who had migrated first to Canada and then to Spokane (where he came into contact with the Salvation Army), settled with his family in Seattle where he attended the Pine Street Mission. Following two brief moves in the inner city, the mission settled in a newly remodeled building in 1920, and the name Bethel Temple placed on the new church. It was the first Pentecostal congregation in the state of Washington, and for many years broadcast a radio ministry, conducted from an organ bench by Offiler, who became one of the first radio preachers in 1925. A Bible school opened in 1952 was discontinued in 1987.
Now called Bethel Fellowship International, the fellowship exists to facilitate and nurture meaningful relationships among member ministers, equipping and enabling them to be more effective in their callings, for the purpose of building and multiplying strong local churches at home in the United States and for the furtherance of fulfilling the great commission through missionary outreach throughout the world. A nonprofit corporation, its members minister throughout the United States, particularly in the Pacific Northwest, as well as Indonesia, Japan, Peru, Africa, and the Netherlands.
Bethel Fellowship International is in fellowship with Ministers Fellowship International (837) headquartered in Portland, Oregon.
In 1987 there were approximately 300 members in eight congregations in the United States.
Bethel Fellowship International. www.bethelfellowshipinternational.com.
c/oCalvary Revival Church, 5833 Poplar Hall Dr., Norfolk, VA 23502
The Calvary Alliance of Churches and Ministries was founded in 1998 by Bp. B. Courtney McBath, a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Pentecostal minister, and the senior founding pastor of Calvary Revival Church in Norfolk, Virginia. After leaving a career in the technical field, in 1990 McBath became a fulltime minister. Throughout the 1990s, together with his wife and co-pastor Janeen L. McBath, he grew Calvary Revival Church into a 7,000-member congregation with an affiliated K–12 parochial school. Though a full-time minister, McBath returned to school and earned an M.A. degree in Biblical studies (Regent University) and a D.Min. (Providence Bible College and Theological Seminary). He is now an adjunct professor at Regent University.
One important aspect of his church’s ministry is the “The Voice of Revival,” a weekly television broadcast. This program is aired both within and outside the United States, and became particularly popular in Nigeria. It provided a base for the jump in the scope of McBath’s leadership in 1998. In 2006, McBath led in the founding of the Discover Life Center, a seven-acre residence facility for men coming out of incarceration and drug addiction.
The Calvary Alliance is a Trinitarian Pentecostal body that holds to the plenary verbal inspiration of the Bible. It practices baptism by full immersion. It emphasizes speaking in tongues and the gifts of the spirit, divine healing, and leading the spirit-filled life.
The Alliance believes in a theocratic church leadership, consisting of a senior minister under apostolic authority—who qualifies on the basis of the call of God, spiritual life, domestic life, character, and ability to rule—along with the plurality of eldership. McBath is the presiding bishop of the Alliance.
In 2008 the alliance reported 28 member congregations, over half of which were in Virginia. Through the Alliance, McBath oversees more than a 100 congregations in the United States, Europe, and Africa.
Calvary Alliance of Churches and Ministries. www.calvaryalliance.org/.
McBath, B. Courtney. Living at the Next Level: Transforming Your Life’s Frustrations into Fulfillment through Friendship with God. New York: Howard Books, 2008.
———. Maximize Your Marriage. Lake Mary, FL: Creation House, 2002.
3800 S. Fairview Rd., Santa Ana, CA 92704
In 1965 Chuck Smith (b. 1935), an independent minister who was the pastor of a fairly large and growing congregation in Corona, California, accepted a call to pastor a very small congregation (25 adults), Calvary Chapel, in Costa Mesa, California. At that time many “hippies” populated the oceanfront near Costa Mesa. His out-reach to these people lead to the conversion of thousands of young people. He instituted a series of discipleship homes where they received training. Services were held every night of the week at a small building in Costa Mesa. This church became known as a center of the “Jesus People Revival” that moved across the United States in the early 1970s. As membership and fame grew, other Calvary churches were established in various communities, and individuals who had visited the church began congregations modeled on Calvary. By 2008 it was one of the ten largest Protestant churches in the United States.
Calvary Chapel has developed a simple statement of belief that emphasizes its nondenominational character. The church refuses to overemphasize those doctrinal differences that have divided Christians in the past. Agape (God’s Divine Love) is held as the only true basis of Christian fellowship. Emphasis is placed on a “verse by verse” expository type of biblical teaching. The church believes in the validity of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit for today, but there is no emphasis on speaking in tongues as the necessary sign of baptism of the Holy Spirit. Prophesy in the Scripture is one of the focal points, and many of Pastor Smith’s books that relate the expectation of seeing some of the predicted events take place in this generation.
Calvary Chapel has developed a variety of outreach ministries. The most notable is “The Word for Today,” which includes cassettes, videotapes, books, radio shows, and other communicative sources for teaching the Bible. Pastor Smith’s radio and television programs are heard in more than 350 cities nationwide. Calvary Chapel also broadcasts its services in video and audio live over the Internet, and maintains an archive of previous broadcasts and Bible studies. The Calvary Chapel Audio Ministry provides sound-system design, equipment, installation, and support for the media needs of fellowships worldwide.
The Bible College, founded in 1975, with the main campus at Murrieta Hot Springs, California, has extension campuses throughout the United States and in York, England; Millstadt, Austria; Kiev, Ukraine; Moscow, Russia; Lima, Peru; and the Philippines. In 2008 enrollment was 5,000 students. It operates two conference centers and a youth camp. In addition, Calvary Chapel supports Wycliffe Bible Translators in Africa; Missionary Aviation Fellowship, comprising teams of aviation, communications, and technology specialists working in Africa, Asia, Eurasia, and Latin America; and Open Doors, to purchase a ship that, in tandem with a barge, delivered a million Bibles to mainland China.
In 2008 Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa reported 1,340 affiliate Calvary Chapels around the world, and more than 20,000 members.
Day School (K–12), Costa Mesa, California.
Calvary Audio Ministry, Silverton, Oregon.
Calvary Bible College, Murrieta, California.
Calvary Chapel Christian Camp, Green Lake Valley, California.
Calvary Chapel. www.calvarychapel.com.
Ellwood, Robert S., Jr. One Way. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1973.
MacIntosh, Michael K., and Raul A. Ries, producers. A Venture in Faith: The History and Philosophy of the Calvary Chapel Movement. VHS tape. Diamond Bar, CA: Logos Media Group, 1992.
Smith, Chuck. Charisma vs. Charismania. Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1983.
———. The Final Curtain. Costa Mesa, CA: Word for Today, 1984.
———. Calvary Chapel Distinctives: The Foundational Principles of the Calvary
Chapel Movement. Costa Mesa, CA, 1993. Available from www.calvarychapel.com/library/smith-chuck/books/ccd.htm.
PO Box 11228, Fort Wayne, IN 48656-1228
Calvary Ministries, Inc., International (CMI) was founded in 1971 as an umbrella organization for those congregations and ministries developed from the work of Calvary Temple, an independent Pentecostal church in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Calvary Temple was begun in 1956 by Dr. Paul E. Paino (d. 2005), a graduate of the Assemblies of Gods Central Bible Institute in Springfield, Missouri. Under his leadership, CMI’s membership grew to 5,000. In 1978 a new building complex was erected to house the expanding program.
In 1969 six men approached Paino for training in the ministry and ordination. The next year several more came for the same reason. In 1972 a more permanent means of training was established with the Christian Training Center and the Paul and Timothy Internship program. Among the early graduates of the center were those ready to begin pastoral ministry and plant new congregations. In part, Calvary Ministries, Inc., International was created to facilitate these students’ordinations and credentialing as well as to provide structure for the planting and establishing of new congregations.
CMI is a nonprofit, religious corporation that helps establish and strengthen local churches. It follows a blending of Episcopal and Presbyterian polity, with each member church completely self-governing and autonomous. CMI maintains Bible colleges and camps and offers counseling and other services to its members.
During the early years of the Jesus People Revival—a national interdenominational revival movement among young adults that began on the West Coast in the late 1960s—the church in Fort Wayne sponsored a Jesus People coffeehouse ministry called Adam’s Apple. The Apple hosted such Christian music artists as Nancy Honeytree, the band Petra, and Jeoff Benward. In addition, a number of CMI’s early church planters came from the ranks of Adam’s Apple members. The Apple no longer exists, but in its place are several thriving youth ministries around the tri-state area (Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin).
Calvary Ministries’ statement of faith is Trinitarian, pre-millennial, and Pentecostal. The Bible is considered entirely sufficient for faith and practice. Other tenets of faith include belief in the spiritual new birth of repentant sinners, the Holy Spirit Baptism, the Church of Jesus Christ as habitation of God through the Spirit, and the Second Coming of Christ.
CMI has expanded from Indiana to 15 other states, with regional offices in Indiana; Pennsylvania (northeastern region); Hamilton, Ohio (central region); Grand Rapids, Michigan (Great Lakes region); and Estero, Florida (southeastern region). CMI offers camps in the Great Lakes region, Richmond, Indiana, and Erie, Pennsylvania. As of 2008 there were four active regions with four active districts: Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania–New York. There are also CMI presences in India, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Togo, Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania.
In 2008 Calvary Ministries reported 150 churches and approximately 300 pastors and ministers.
Central Theological College, Auburn, Indiana.
Christian Training Center, Greensburg, Pennsylvania.
CMI Connect. • CMI Newsletter, published online.
Calvary Ministries, Inc., International. www.cmifellowship.com/.
6724 Fabre St., Montreal, QC, Canada H2G 2Z6
Italian Presbyterians were the first of the Italian Canadians to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit and experience speaking in tongues. Although some Italians in Chicago became Pentecostals as early as 1907 and began missionary work in the United States, the Canadian work had an entirely independent origin, beginning in 1913 in Hamilton, Ontario, with the ministry of a Christian-Jewish missionary named Cohen. In 1914 two of the men who had received the baptism, Charles Pavia and Frank Rispoli, took the experience to Toronto, where they visited door-to-door in the Italian community. By 1920 the fervor had spread to Montreal and other Italian-Canadian communities. Among the early leaders of the movement were Luigi Ippolito and Ferdinand Zaffuto.
Upon his return to the United States, evangelist Cohen informed the Italian Pentecostals in Chicago of the Canadian group, and a delegation visited the Hamilton and Toronto churches. The doctrine and practice of the Canadian Assemblies of God (formerly known as the Italian Pentecostal Church of Canada) is similar to that of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada, with whom they share fraternal relations. The Canadian Assemblies of God views their mission as serving the Italian community and all Canadians, regardless of language, nationality, or race, in proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. A missionary program is supported in the Dominican Republic.
In 2008 the church reported 21 congregations and 44 ministers in Canada. In 1997 there were 5,000 members worldwide, of which approximately 3,300 were in Canada.
Eastern Pentecostal Bible College, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Italian Bible Institute, Rome, Italy.
Voce Evangelica (Evangel Voice).
Canadian Assemblies of God. www.caogonline.org.
De Caro, Louis. Our Heritage: The Christian Church of North America. Sharon, PA: General Council, Christian Church of North America, 1977.
Zucchi, Luigi. “The Italian Pentecostal Church of Canada: Origin and Brief History.” Montreal: Italian Pentecostal Church of Canada, 1993.
2614 Hwy. 62, Jeffersonville, IN 47130
Christ Gospel Churches International is a conservative Pentecostal association founded in the 1950s by Rev. Bernice R. Hicks. It shares its major beliefs with other Pentecostal bodies, especially as they are set forth in the Apostles’ Creed. The churches work to establish places of Christian worship and fellowship and to promote Christians’relationship to Jesus Christ. They believe in the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. Worship is celebratory and exuberant, with members singing, shouting, and dancing; during times of silence, members study the Bible. Rev. Hicks remained active in her ninth decade, preaching two to four services per week in addition to writing books and training materials and traveling extensively.
The uniqueness of the church lies not so much in its core teachings as in the way that Hicks tied together the spiritual themes and biblical principles. Hicks believed that the Old Testament tabernacle was laid out in the form of a cross and that it serves as a useful metaphor for Christians in their spiritual experience as they grow to maturity in Christ. She laid out her teachings on the Old Testament tabernacle and other themes in more than 100 books and booklets.
Church members are taught to follow standards of holiness. These include the admonition for women not to wear makeup or cut their hair. Everyone dresses modestly. Although Christ Gospel Churches hold a Bible-centered belief and maintain conservative behavior standards, they do not claim to be the only Christian group attaining salvation and teach that Christians everywhere should rejoice whenever the name of Christ is upheld. Believing that people being united in the love of Christ is of great importance, the churches came early to the idea of racially integrated congregations. Although the churches practice the biblical principle of tithing, they place a lesser emphasis on giving and fundraising than do most denominations.
In Mexico, Christ Gospel maintains two orphanages, oversees 500 churches and a Bible school, and sponsors a printing plant that produces Christian material in Spanish for dissemination in Mexico, Central and South America, and Spain. India has more than 400 Christ Gospel Churches, and there are affiliated churches in New Zealand, Holland, Iceland, Romania, Spain, the Philippines, the Faroe Islands, Jamaica, Haiti, South Africa and other African nations, England, Germany, Japan, Sweden, Mongolia, Russia, and Central and South American nations.
The churches support a radio broadcast ministry heard over the Voice of Europe, Radio Africa, Hope Radio in Ireland, Radio Fax in England, and many other stations worldwide.
Not reported. In 2008 more than 70 congregations were affiliated with Christ Gospel in the United States, and Christ Gospel Churches International, Inc., coordinated a worldwide organization of more than 1,400 affiliated churches in 135 countries.
Christ Gospel Church. www.christgospel.org/.
Current address not obtained for this edition.
The Churches of the Kingdom of God is a small Pentecostal body that emphasizes Jesus’message of the kingdom as the basic proclamation of the Gospel. According to Elder F. H. Reese, a prolific writer for the churches, Jesus came preaching the kingdom, which he declared to be “at hand.” It is entered by repentance and being born again and is open to all. The kingdom was prepared from the foundation of the world, but it came in power only at Pentecost when the Spirit descended upon the early disciples. During the 1960s, Reese wrote a series of tracts on the kingdom of God theme.
Reese, F. H. Entering into the Kingdom of God. Gravette, AK: Churches of the Kingdom of God, n.d. 8 pp.
———. The Gospel of the Kingdom of God. Gravette, AK: Churches of the Kingdom of God, n.d. 16 pp.
———. The Promise of the Father. Gravette, AK: Churches of the Kingdom of God, n.d. 12 pp.
PO Box 165, Hutchinson, KS 67501
Congregational Bible Churches International is a full gospel Pentecostal body established in 1977 through the merger of the Way Open Door Church and the Independent Holiness Church. Formerly known as the Congregational Bible Holiness Church, it adopted its present name in 1988. The Independent Holiness Church began in 1922. The Way Open Door Church—formerly affiliated with the General Council of Congregational Christian Churches—included congregations that had severed ties with that organization when it merged with the Evangelical and Reformed Church to become the United Church of Christ. Dr. M. L. Webber, president of the Open Door Church at the time of the 1977 merger, has continued to serve as international president of the Congregational Bible Churches since its formation.
The Churches’ doctrine is similar to that of the Assemblies of God and asserts faith in the Bible as the infallible Word of God, the Trinity, the deity of Jesus Christ, the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the sanctification of Christians by the Holy Spirit. Members believe in the future rapture of the church, in which Christians will be taken from the earth before the period of Great Tribulation, and in the eventual resurrection of all to heaven or eternal punishment.
The church is headed by a national and an international board over which the president of the church sits as chairman.
In 1990 the church had approximately 100,000 members in 500 churches worldwide, of which 10,000 members and 60 churches served by 100 ministers were in the United States. Missionary work is pursued in Guyana, Jamaica, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Singapore, India, Nigeria, Ghana, and Liberia.
Congregational Bible Revival News.
1703 Dalton Rd., Lima, NY 14485-9516
In 1924 Rev. Ivan Quay Spencer (1888-1970) and his wife, Minnie B. Spencer, opened a Pentecostal Bible institute in Endicott, New York, to train young men and women for full-time revival ministry. Graduates of the Elim Bible Institute formed the Elim Ministerial Fellowship in 1933, which eventually became the Elim Fellowship in 1972. In 1951 the school moved to Lima, New York, where it occupies the campus of the former Genesee Wesleyan Seminary, founded in the nineteenth century by the Methodist Church.
The doctrine of the Fellowship is similar to that of the Assemblies of God, with a strong emphasis on the Holy Spirit-filled and sanctified life of the believer. Spencer was strongly affected by the Latter Rain revival, which began in Canada in 1948. He and others brought the revival to the school, publicized it in the Elim Herald, and took a leadership role in spreading the renewed emphasis on the gifts of the Spirit being poured out on God’s people in the last days.
Elim Fellowship offers assistance to missionaries, credentials for ministers, and counseling for individuals and churches. The fellowship is committed to fervent witness to the Gospel, with their worship and services encompassing both genders, all races, and all ethnic groups.
The fellowship is governed congregationally and holds an annual meeting each spring at Lima. Elim Fellowship–sponsored missionaries are currently at work around the world, on all continents. The founder’s son, I. Carlton Spencer (b. 1914), succeeded his father in the leadership of the fellowship, overseeing it from 1947 to 1985. In 2008 Ronald Burgio was the president. The fellowship holds membership in the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (NFCA); the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE); the International Pentecostal Association (IPA); the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America (PCCNA); the Charismatic Leaders’ Fellowship (CLF); and the North American Renewal Services Committee. Elim Fellowship’s international ministries began in East Africa in 1938 and have since expanded into many countries in Latin America, Europe, and Asia.
In 2008 the fellowship reported 85 churches in 14 states.
Elim Bible Institute, Lima, New York. www.elim.edu.
F.A.M.I.L.Y., monthly • Elim Herald
Elim Fellowship. www.elimfellowship.org/.
Meloon, Marion. Ivan Spencer, Willow in the Wind. Plainfield, NJ: Logos International, 1974.
Veach, Edith Adele. Elim: Living in the Flow: Insights for Moving in the River of God. Lima, NY: Elim Bible Institute, 1999.
6400 National Rd. E #797, Richmond, IN 47374
Faith Christian Fellowship International is an association of Pentecostal ministers and churches founded in 1979 by Bp. William Hildreth and his wife Hattie Hildreth. (It should not be confused with the organization of the same name founded in 1977 by Buddy and Pat Harrison and based in Tulsa, Oklahoma.) The Hildreths were joined by a group of Pentecostal ministers who shared a common vision, were like-minded in belief, and focused on what they saw as the apostolic ministry of the New Testament church. The fellowship they created was to serve full gospel ministers, churches, and missionary endeavors. The fellowship exists primarily to provide legal covering and credentials for independent ministers, congregations, evangelistic associations, missionary associations, and ministry organizations.
The fellowship provides seminars and conferences, minister’s fellowships, assistance with establishing new ministries, and some inexpensive legal services for its members. Its organization is ultracongregational, and it makes no claim of ecclesiastical authority over either churches or church members. Local churches and ministries are allowed to ordain ministers as they see fit.
The fellowship’s doctrine is similar to that of the Assemblies of God, affirming belief in the Trinity, salvation in Christ, the authority of the Bible, and the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The two ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper are recognized. Members practice the laying on of hands for healing, conferring office, and the reception of the Holy Spirit.
Faith Christian Fellowship International. www.fcfi.us/.
4909 East Buckeye Rd., Madison, WI 53716-1898
The Fellowship of Christian Assemblies (FCA) began in 1922 in St. Paul, Minnesota, as an unincorporated fellowship of evangelical Pentecostal churches. About 25 ministers from three small Scandinavian-oriented groups joined ranks under the banner Independent Assemblies of God (IAG). The current name was adopted in 1973.
Several of the founding key figures had Scandinavian Baptist heritage, with its stress on local church autonomy and voluntary interchurch cooperation. They included Arthur F. Durham, of the Scandinavian Baptists in Chicago; Bengt Magnus Johnson, with a Baptist background that included a vigorous stand on local-church autonomy; A. A. Holmgren, of the same heritage; and Arthur F. Johnson, who became mentor to Elmer C. Erikson, whose ministry was an influential center in Duluth, Minnesota, for more than four decades. The first period of IAG/FCA history emphasized autonomy, with conferences and other interchurch ministries spear-headed by area “leadership churches.” Its subsequent history involved a steady quest for intentional, cooperative ministries planned and led on a broad associational basis.
The fellowship was incorporated in 2001. Its process includes national and regional committees, with emphases in the areas of missions, ministry, and congregational life. Initiatives may arise locally (area clusters), regionally, or nationally. It emphasizes extensive information flow. A national coordinator serves as a channel for information and motivation.
National conferences, which include the FCA of Canada, are planned by annually selected committees. Fellowship Press, a society with membership open to any FCA congregation, publishes the monthly FCA Leadership, FCA church bulletin inserts, and other informational material.
Regional conferences and area ministerial clusters attend to mutual concerns and projects. New ministers and churches seeking formal recognition in the fellowship directory generally develop contacts with area FCA churches and pastors, leading to recommendation by two pastors (the “Barnabas Plan”). Ministers and missionaries are credentialed by their local churches.
In 2008 the fellowship listed approximately 85 churches in the United States and 100 in Canada. A number of churches cooperating with the FCA are unlisted. Listed ministers and missionaries number about 215 in the United States and 280 in Canada. Churches of FCA/USA and Canada support missionary work in approximately 70 countries.
Christian Life College, Mount Prospect, Illinois.
Seattle Bible College, Everett, Washington.
Southwest Bible College, Moreno Valley, California.
Living Faith Bible College, Caroline, Alberta, Canada.
Fellowship of Christian Assemblies. www.fcaequip.net.
PO Box 2165, Reidsville, GA 30453
The Fellowship of Churches and Ministers, International (FCMI) is an association of Pentecostal/charismatic churches formed in the late 1980s through the efforts of its co-founders, Bill Ligon (who remains its president) and Ed Robbins. Member churches are located primarily in Georgia and neighboring states.
The FMCI’s purpose, according to its constitution, is to provide membership and fellowship for churches and ministers of like faith and order who are concerned with the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world. The fellowship emphasizes the autonomy of the local church, though member churches agree to a statement of doctrine that is in agreement with mainline Trinitarian Pentecostalism. It affirms that the baptism in the Holy Spirit as evidenced by speaking in tongues is for all believers, that a believer can be baptized contemporaneously with regeneration or any time subsequent to a regenerating experience, and that the baptism experience is separate and distinct from regeneration. In addition, the fellowship expects that the manifestations of the gifts of the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 12), especially divine healing, will operate today as in ancient times. The fellowship expects members to tithe, and to live a life separated from the world in behavior standards.
It is primarily for the association of independent ministers and churches, but provides charters for congregations and credentials for ministers. The fellowship does not license or ordain—actions left to the local churches—but it does recognize such status for ministerial members, and issues annual credentials to all ministerial members in good standing.
The group is led by its executive board, which includes the fellowship’s founders and its officers. The board is elected at the fellowship’s annual meeting. The executive board and several presbyters (elders who serve as district coordinators) constitute the Presbytery.
In 2008 the FCMI reported 16 congregations associated with the fellowship, as well as two African congregations, one in Zimbabwe and one in South Africa.
Fellowship of Churches and Ministers, International. www.fellowshipcmi.org.
614 13th Ave., Delano, CA 93215
The Filipino Assemblies of the First Born Inc. (FAFB Inc.) was founded at Stockton, California, by the Rev. Julian Bernabe, an immigrant to the United States. The organization took place at a convention that met from June 26 to July 4, 1933. Headquarters, initially in Fresno, were moved to San Francisco in 1942 and to Delano, California, in 1943. Doctrine and practice are like those of the Assemblies of God; the group is primarily an ethnic church with preaching often done in the Filipino language. The FAFB Inc.’s international arm, the International Assemblies of the First Born (IAFB), is working to establish churches in Cambodia, Hong Kong, Honduras, Canada, Italy, and Australia. Reverend Bernabe, who was 90 years old in 2008, continues to preach Christian principles.
Not reported. In 1969 there were 15 churches in California and 17 in Hawaii.
c/o Chester H. Heath, PO Box 477, Export, PA 15632
Among the oldest of the organized Pentecostal groups, the Free Gospel Church, Inc., was founded in 1916 as the United Free Gospel and Missionary Society by two brothers, the Reverends Frank Casley and William Casley. It adopted its present name in 1957. An early emphasis on foreign missions led to initial efforts in Guatemala, though the work was lost to the Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee), and China, which was closed after the Communists come to power in 1948. In doctrine the Free Gospel Church is similar to the Assemblies of God. It conducts missions in Sierra Leone, Ghana, Nigeria, India, Myammar (Burma), and the Philippines.
All overseas missionaries receive a stated salary each month plus money for expenses such as housing and vehicles. Missionaries itinerate in as many churches as possible to raise funds toward their support and receive a monthly report of all funds received. All work at the Free Gospel Church’s office is done on a volunteer basis, and other cost are kept to a minimum, making it possible for 98 percent of all receipts to be spent overseas. The church issues receipts to those who make contributions and sends out a bimonthly newsletter that keeps supporters informed of progress in the countries in which the church supports personnel.
In 2008 there were 12 clergy serving six congregations.
Free Gospel Institute, Export, Pennsylvania.
Free Gospel Bible Institute, Northern Luzon, Philippines.
Christian Leadership College, Kono, Sierra Leone.
Free Gospel Church Missions Newsletter, available online from www.fgbi.org/Missions/FGMArchives.html.
Free Gospel Church, Inc. www.fgbi.org/Missions/MissionsFr.html.
1400 East Skelly Dr., Tulsa, OK 74105-4742
In the late 1940s a controversy developed in the Apostolic Faith Church over issues of taking offerings in church, visiting churches not in fellowship, foreign mission work, and using doctors. Some who supported these activities formed the Ministerial and Missionary Alliance of the Original Trinity Apostolic Faith, Inc., for which they were barred from fellowship. In 1952 they formed the Full Gospel Evangelistic Association (FGEA). Except for the points at issue, the doctrine is like that of the Apostolic Faith.
The FGEA fellowship, composed of individuals, member churches, and ministries, view their mission as proclaiming the word of God and the Gospel in the United States and worldwide. The fellowship reports that it invests tens of thousands of dollars per year in missionary work and ministry efforts in El Salvador, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia, and Spain, as well domestic projects such as the Inner City Children in Phoenix, Arizona; the Navaho Indian Outreach in Shiprock, New Mexico; and church plantings in Missouri and Alabama.
Annual camp meetings are held in Oklahoma and Texas. The FGEA also holds an annual conference and conducts an annual men’s retreat.
Victory Bible Institute, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Full Gospel News. Available online at the FGEA Web site.
Full Gospel Evangelistic Association. www.fgeaonline.org.
304 3rd St., East Jordan, MI 49727
Full Gospel Truth, Inc., is a Pentecostal church founded in 1951 in Michigan by Harley R. Barber, a Pentecostal minister, after he withdrew from his previous denominational affiliation. It quickly spread to neighboring states and by the mid-1950s was functioning in California.
Full Gospel Truth is a Trinitarian Pentecostal church whose doctrine is similar to that of the Assemblies of God. Among its teachings are the practice of baptism by immersion, footwashing, divine healing, and tithing. It advises members to become conscientious objectors to war. It teaches that persons of both sexes should have the privilege of ministering to the fullest, except in those areas of church life that call for the exercise of authority; women should not exercise authority over men. The church expects the imminent return of Christ.
The church follows what it sees as a biblical organization as in Rom. 12:4, Eph. 4:11, and I Cor. 12:28. It thus recognizes seven offices to be filled: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, teachers, governments, and helps. Nationally the church is organized theocratically under the guidance of a superintendent. The national officers meet annually in conference.
Yours and Mine Share Paper.
Constitution and By-Law of the Full Gospel Truth, Inc. East Jordan, MI: Full Gospel Truth, n.d.
200 N. Lawrence Ave., Fullerton, CA 92832
The General Assemblies and Church of the First Born, formed in 1907, is a small Pentecostal body without church headquarters or paid clergy. It has about 30 congregations across the country. Congregations are concentrated in Oklahoma and California, with individual congregations at Montrose and Pleasant View, Colorado, and Indianapolis, Indiana. Members believe in the Trinity; deny original sin, believing that we will be punished only for our own sin; and assert that man can be saved by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel. There are four ordinances: faith in Jesus Christ, repentance, baptism by immersion, and laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Spirit. The group makes use of all of the gifts of the Spirit and holds the Lord’s Supper in conjunction with foot washing, but does not seek the help of doctors.
Elders oversee the local congregations, which are organized informally. Some elders are ordained and serve as preachers. No membership rolls are kept. The Indianapolis church has published a hymnal. There is an annual camp meeting in Oklahoma each summer.
In 2006, the church’s directory included 121 congregations.
Since the mid-1970s, the Church of the First Born has been involved in an ongoing controversy relative to the members’refraining from the use of medical doctors and withholding medical treatment for minors, several of whom have died. Trials following the deaths of the minors have had varying results, but, as the number has increased, courts have been less willing to forgive parents for allowing their children to die when medical treatment would have prevented their deaths. Colorado, where several deaths have occurred, moved to change laws in the 1990s, which tended to block prosecution of what was considered child abuse by negligence within religious groups.
1294 Rutledge Rd., Transfer, PA 16154
The Christian Church of North America (CCNA) traces it origins to the revival that started at the Azusa Street Mission in Los Angeles and moved to Chicago in 1907. The Italian community there responded to the movement, and some of those who began a ministry later gathered in 1927 in Niagara Falls, New York, to formally organize the Christian Church of North America. The church’s top priority is evangelism and especially mission work (including efforts to evangelize its homeland), as is illustrated by its finally incorporating in 1948 as the Missionary Society of the Christian Church of North America.
By 1963, in recognition of the original movement’s transcending its roots in a single ethnic group to become a multiethnic church, the movement was renamed the General Council of the Christian Church of North America. The church resembles the Assemblies of God in its doctrinal stance. Its foreign missions arm, CCNA Missions, assists in the planting, nurturing, and expanding of churches and ministries in 40 countries worldwide.
Services offered by CCNA include an annual convention, pastors’retreats, youth conventions, women’s and men’s fellowships, and a department that attends to the needs of retired ministers and those in difficult circumstances. Member churches are located in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
CCNA is a member of the National Association of Evangelicals, the National Religious Broadcasters, and the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America. For all intents and purposes, its credentials are interchangeable with other Pentecostal organizations such as the Assemblies of God, the Church of God, and the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel.
In 2006 the CCNA’s magazine listed 47 affiliated churches in five eastern states.
CCNA School of the Bible, Middletown, New Jersey.
General Council of Christian Church of North America. www.ccna.org.
DeCaro, Louis. Our Heritage: The Christian Church of North America. Sharon, PA: General Council, Christian Church of North America.
1445 N Boonville Ave., Springfield, MO 65802-1894
The General Council of the Assemblies of God was formed in Hot Springs, Arkansas, in April 1914 at a convention of Pentecostal ministers and churches. The council adopted a common body of doctrinal standards and consolidated missionary, ministerial, educational, and publishing efforts. The Word and Witness, edited by E. N. Bell (1866-1923), a forerunner of the weekly Pentecostal Evangel, was the first official periodical of the denomination.
The church’s governmental structure is congregational on the local church level and presbyterial at the national level, where the General Council has centralized control over missionary, educational, ministerial, and publishing concerns. A 17-member executive presbytery serves as the church’s board of directors and meets every other month. The church has more than 1,800 missionaries serving in 191 nations. In the United States, the Division of Home Missions oversees ministries to intercultural groups, military personnel, secular college campuses, Teen Challenge (a program for those with problems such as drug and alcohol abuse), and the opening of new churches. The Gospel Publishing House, the printing arm of the church, is one of the major publishers of Christian literature in the United States.
The threefold mission of the Assemblies of God is evangelism, discipleship, and worship. The church’s cardinal doctrines include the Bible as the Word of God, the fall of humanity, and God’s provision of salvation only through the death of His Son Jesus Christ, water baptism by immersion, divine healing, and the imminent return of Jesus for those who have accepted Him as Savior. The church’s distinctive doctrine is the belief in the baptism of the Holy Spirit, an experience following salvation that is accomplished by speaking in other languages.
The Assemblies is in fellowship with the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. It is a member of the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America and cooperates with the Pentecostal World Conference.
In 2008 the AG reported more than 12,100 churches in the United States and 236,022 churches and outstations in 191 other nations.
American Indian College, Phoenix, Arizona.
Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, Springfield, Missouri.
Bethany University, Scotts Valley, California.
Caribbean Theological College, BayamÛn, Puerto Rico.
Central Bible College, Springfield, Missouri.
Evangel University, Springfield, Missouri.
Global University, Springfield, Missouri.
Latin American Bible Institute, San Antonio, Texas.
Latin American Bible Institute of California, La Puente, California.
Native American Bible College, Shannon, North Carolina.
North Central University, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Northwest University, Kirkland, Washington.
Southeastern University, Lakeland, Florida.
Southwestern Assemblies of God University, Waxahachie, Texas.
Trinity Bible College, Ellendale, North Dakota.
Valley Forge Christian College, Phoenixville, Pennsylvania.
Vanguard University, Costa Mesa, California.
Western Bible Institute, Phoenix, Arizona.
Zion Bible College, Barrington, Rhode Island.
Today’s Pentecostal Evangel (TPE) • Assemblies of God Heritage • Enrichment Journal • Christian Education Counselor • On Course • PrimeLine (for seniors).
General Council of the Assemblies of God. ag.org/top.
Brumback, Carl. Suddenly from Heaven. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1961.
Carlson, G. Raymond. Our Faith and Fellowship. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1977.
Menzies, William W. Anointed to Serve. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1971.
Perkin, Noel, and John Garlock. Our World Witness. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1963.
c/o Grace Community Church, PO Box 591876, Houston, TX 77259-1876
Grace International was formerly known as the California Evangelistic Association (CEA), which began in 1933 (incorporated 1934) as the Colonial Tabernacle of Long Beach, California. Oscar C. Harms, a former pastor in the Advent Christian Church, had established the tabernacle. Additional assemblies became associated with it, and in 1939, it assumed the CEA name. In 1979 the name became Christian Evangelistic Assemblies (still CEA), and in February 2008 the CEA became Grace International, a non-denominational, independent organization working to show Christ to every individual throughout the world. It aims to provide covering, support, and resources to pastors and churches while allowing flexibility and independence. It is in essential doctrinal agreement with the Assemblies of God, except that it is amillennial.
Grace International has churches in more than 40 nations with fellowships, a seminary, bible colleges, pastors’ conferences, orphanages, schools, and compassion ministries. Its current president is Steve Riggle.
In 2008 Grace International reported more than 10,000 members and more than 100 ministers on two 80-plus acre campuses.
Grace International. www.ceanatl.org.
Constitution and By-Laws. Long Beach, CA: California Evangelistic Association, 1939.
PO Box 26902, 1910 W Sunset Blvd., Ste. 200, Los Angeles, CA 90026-017
Canadian headquarters: Foursquare Gospel Church of Canada, B307–2099 Lougheed Hwy, Port Coquitlam, BC V3B 1A8, Canada.
The International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, commonly known as the Foursquare Church, was founded by Aimee Semple McPherson (1890–1944), the flamboyant and controversial pastor of Angelus Temple in Los Angeles, California. Aimee McPherson’s mother, a member of the Salvation Army, had promised God to dedicate her daughter to the ministry. At the age of 17, the teenage Aimee McPherson was converted, baptized with the Holy Spirit, and soon married to evangelist Robert James Semple (1881–1910). In 1910 the couple traveled to China as missionaries; while serving there, Robert Semple died of malaria, just one month before the birth of their daughter, Roberta. With her daughter, Aimee McPherson returned to the United States where she later married Harold S. McPherson (1890–1968). They had a son, Rolf Kennedy McPherson (b. 1913). Together the McPhersons began to conduct independent, itinerant, Pentecostal evangelistic meetings. Following her divorce from Harold McPherson, Aimee McPherson continued the ministry. In 1917 she began a periodical, Bridal Call, which served her ministry for many years.
Unsupported and berated by other ministers who did not believe that women should speak from a pulpit, Aimee McPherson won success through her oratorical abilities, her charisma, her expounding the teaching of the Foursquare Gospel, and her use of unusual and previously untried methods that brought widespread publicity. During her early ministry, she spent much time with T. K. Leonard (1861–1946) and William H. Durham (1873–1912), both early Pentecostal leaders. In 1918 Aimee McPherson settled in Los Angeles and, with the help of those who had responded to her ministry, built and dedicated Angelus Temple in 1923. Throughout the remainder of her ministry, the temple was the focus of numerous spiritual extravaganzas, including religious drama, illustrated messages, and oratorios, which brought Sister Aimee, as she was affectionately called, a reputation for the unconventional. In 1926 Aimee McPherson disappeared for more than a month, and upon her return she said that she had been kidnapped. A major controversy developed, with critics claiming that she had disappeared of her own volition, yet her claim was never disproved.
Even before the temple was dedicated, an evangelistic and training institute had been opened to educate leaders who went on to found numerous Foursquare churches. The creation of some 32 churches in southern California by 1921 spurred the formation of the Echo Park Evangelistic Association, and in 1927, the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel was incorporated. The church also built and began operation of KFSG, the third-oldest radio station in Los Angeles. It sold the station in 2001.
Work expanded to Canada, first to Vancouver and then eastward to Ontario. The Western Canada District was set off from the Northwest District in 1964. The Church of the Foursquare Gospel of Western Canada was established as a provincial society in 1976. A federal corporation was created in 1981 and the Foursquare Gospel Church of Canada emerged as an autonomous sister church.
The church’s lengthy declaration of faith affirms the authority of Scripture and the traditional beliefs of Protestant evangelical Christianity. There are two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Equal emphasis is placed on the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the Spirit-filled life and the gifts and fruits of the Spirit. Tithing is acknowledged as the method ordained of God for the support of the ministry.
The organization of the church is vested in the president, a position held by Aimee McPherson until her death in 1944. Her son succeeded her, holding the post until his retirement in 1988. The sixth president is Jack Hayford. A board of directors, which includes the president and other appointed or elected members, serves as the highest administrative body for the denomination’s business affairs. The Foursquare cabinet and executive council advise the board of directors and the president. The convention body has the sole power to make or amend the bylaws to give direction to the Foursquare movement. The convention body is composed of representatives from Foursquare Churches and the credentialed ministers of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel. Throughout the United States, the church is divided into three regional centers covering a total of 73 districts, with each area overseen by a district supervisor.
In 2006 the church reported 260,644 members in the United States. In 2008 it reported approximately 36,000 Foursquare churches in 142 countries.
L.I.F.E. (Lighthouse of International Foursquare Evangelism) Pacific College, San Dimas, California.
Pacific Life Bible College, Surrey, British Columbia. (Sponsored by the Foursquare Gospel Church of Canada.)
There are also more than 247 Bible colleges and institutes in foreign mission fields around the world.
Advance (also available in Spanish). • Foursquare Missions Advance.
The Foursquare Church. www.foursquare.org.
Cox, Raymond L., ed. The Foursquare Gospel. Los Angeles: Foursquare Publications, 1969.
Duffield Guy P., and Nathaniel M. Van Cleave. Foundations of Pentecostal Theology. Los Angeles: L.I.F.E. Bible College, 1983.
Epstein, Daniel Mark. Sister Aimee: The Life of Aimee Semple McPherson. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1993.
McPherson, Aimee Semple. The Story of My Life. Waco, TX: Word Books, 1973.
Sutton, Michael Avery. Aimee Semple McPherson and the Resurrection of Christian America. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007.
612 Isenberg St., Honolulu, HI 96826-4532
The Lamb of God Church, founded in 1942 by Rev. Rose H. Kwan, is a small Pentecostal church with congregations located on Oahu and Molokai, Hawaii. The church primarily serves native Hawaiians. Following the death of Pastor Melvin Kwan in 2002 at age 72, the Lamb of God Church continued to be administered by Kaua and Michela Kwan.
In 2008 the church reported five congregations.
Lamb of God Bible Schools in the cities of Honolulu, Hoolelua, Kaunakakai, and Waianae, on the island of Hawaii; and on the Kalamaula peninsula on Molokai.
8839 CR 44, Leesburg, FL 34788-9201
In the spring of 1989, Christopher Brian Ward, who had undergone a religious conversion at Calvary Chapel in Riverside, California, started a Bible study in his home in Leesburg, Florida. The following year it was incorporated as Calvary Chapel Leesburg. In May 1996 the congregation opened an Internet ministry dedicated to deliverance (from demonic possession), hippies (which the site describes as “wandering children”), and ufologists (“ufology” is a neologism that refers to people who study reports of unidentified flying objects). The site had received more than 1.5 million hits as of July 1, 2007.
In 1998 Calvary Chapel Leesburg changed its name to Logos Christian Fellowship of Leesburg. In 2001, because of concerns about the ministry to ufologists, Logos was ejected from the Calvary Chapel fellowship. The church continues as a charismatic fellowship, similar in doctrine to its parent body.
Since the break with Calvary Chapel, while continuing its main activity in Leesburg, Logos Christian Fellowship has launched a nationwide ministry directed toward hippies, ufologists, the needy, and the homeless. In April 2001, Brian Cronin and Ward wrote the Phat News of Mark, a Hippie Bible and Commentary Adapted from the King James Version. The mass distribution of copies has become a tool for reaching what is perceived to be a lost generation. Cronin and Ward attend annual Rainbow Gatherings, held by the counterculture community in the United States.
The fellowship sponsors ministries in Kenya and Guatemala in addition to food bank projects in Kenya, Africa, Haiti, Guatemala, Laos, Indonesia, Japan, and Tonga.
In 2008 the fellowship’s Web site reported that more than 15,000 people have accepted its email invitation to “give their heart to the Lord.” As of 2008, the fellowship reported that it had ordained some 70 ministers now serving across the United States, with additional ministers serving in Hungary, the United Kingdom, and Kenya.
Logos Christian Fellowship. www.logoschristian.org.
2020 Bell Ave., Des Moines, IA 50315-1096
The Open Bible Standard Churches resulted from a merger in 1935 of two evangelistic movements, the Open Bible Evangelistic Association and Bible Standard Conference. Both of these movements had their roots in the Azusa Street Mission in Los Angeles and the spreading Pentecostal revival. The former body had been founded by John R. Richey (1899–1984) in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1932 and the latter in Eugene, Oregon, by Fred Hornshuh (1884–1982) in 1919. At the time of the merger there were 210 ministers.
Doctrinally, the Open Bible Churches, as they have been called since 1996, affirm the Bible as the infallible Word of God, the Trinity, and the virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, resurrection, ascension, and deity of Christ. Believers experience the holiness, healing, and baptism of the Holy Spirit as evidenced by speaking in tongues. Open Bible is governed by a biennial representative convention that elects a national board of directors. It is a member of the National Association of Evangelicals and the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America, and supports the Pentecostal World Conference. Missions are conducted in 36 countries around the world.
In 2008 the churches reported 264 congregations in the United States and 1,408 worldwide, including 109 churches (composed of 2,000 members) in Canada. Outside the United States there were 130,449 members led by 2,068 ministers.
Eugene Bible College, Eugene, Oregon.
Message of the Open Bible • Jeff’s Journal • In Touch
Open Bible Churches. www.openbible.org/.
Mitchell, Robert Bryant. Heritage & Horizons. Des Moines, IA: Open Bible Publishers, 1982.
———. Heritage & Harvests: The History of the International Ministries of Open Bible Standard Churches. Des Moines, IA: Open Bible Publishers, 1995.
Policies and Principles. Des Moines, IA: Open Bible Standard Churches, 1986.
2450 Milltower Ct., Mississauga, ON, Canada L5N 5Z6
News of the Pentecostal revival that had broken out at the little mission on Azusa Street in 1906 drew many people to Los Angeles, including several Canadians. Most prominent among them was Robert McAleister (1880–1953), who brought the revival to Ottawa. In addition, A. H. Argue, who encountered the first wave of the revival sweeping Chicago, returned to Winnipeg with its message. In 1907 he began a magazine, The Apostolic Messenger, to spread the word. Within a few years Pentecostal assemblies had been established across Canada.
Organization proceeded slowly, though as early as 1909 a Pentecostal Missionary Union was formed. In 1917 ministers from the eastern part of Canada met at Montreal and formed the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. Two years later, ministers in the west formed the Western Canada District of the Assemblies of God, attached to the United States group headquartered in Springfield, Missouri. In 1921 the eastern group also affiliated with the Assemblies of God. In 1922 the government charter was finalized.
Soon after the affiliation with the American Pentecostals, the Canadians began to see that they were at a disadvantage and gradually moved to separate themselves and assume the original name of the eastern organization. Headquarters were reestablished in Ottawa and later moved to Toronto. The organizational split (which implied no break in fraternal relations) occurred for three main reasons: First, the Canadians placed less emphasis on doctrine and were thus open to more latitude of belief. Second, the Canadians encompassed greater ethnic diversity, with one out of ten congregations not speaking English. Third, Canadian voices such as James Eustace Purdie, who argued for Canadian autonomy, were influential.
Headed by William Morrow, general superintendent, the Canadian assemblies largely agree with the Assemblies of God. They advocate tithing and have strict rules about divorce, especially among ministers. They are also fraternally related to the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland, with whom they share the same doctrinal statement. The Assemblies provide support to 130 missionary families in approximately 40 countries worldwide.
In 2008 the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada reported that more than 235,000 people attend services in more than 1,100 churches across English-and French-speaking Canada, tended by more than 3,500 pastors and ministry leaders.
Canadian Pentecostal Seminary, Langley, British Columbia, Canada.
Global University Canada/International Correspondence Institute, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Horizon College and Seminary (formerly Central Pentecostal College), Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Institut Biblique du QuÈbec, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Master’s College and Seminary, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Pentecostal Sub-Arctic Leadership Training (S.A.L.T.) College, Fort Smith, Northwest Territories, Canada.
Summit Pacific College (formerly Western Pentecostal Bible College), Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada.
Vanguard College (formerly Northwest Bible College), Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Testimony • 50 Plus Contact
Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. www.paoc.org/.
Atter, G. F. The Third Force. Peterborough, ON: College Press, 1970.
Brown, Victor G. Fifty Years of Pentecostal History, 1933-1983. Burlington, ON: Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada, Western Ontario District, 1983.
Holm, Randall. A Paradigmatic Analysis of Authority within Pentecostalism. Ph.D. dissertation, 1995. Laval University, Quebec, QC.
Kulbeck, Gloria Grace. What God Had Wrought: A History of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. Toronto, ON: Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada, 1958.
Miller, Thomas, W. Canadian Pentecostals: A History of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada. Mississauga. ON: Full Gospel Publishing House, 1994.
———. “The Canadian ‘Azusa’: The Hebden Mission in Toronto.” Pneuma 8:1 (1986): 5-30.
57 Thorburn Rd., PO Box 8895, Sta. A, St. John’s, NF, Canada A1B 3T2
Pentecostalism spread to Newfoundland in 1910, and on Easter Sunday in 1911 the first assembly, Bethesda Mission, opened at St. John’s. Spurred by the efforts of Victoria Booth-Clibborn Demarest (1889-1982), the mission was incorporated in 1925 as the Bethesda Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland. The word “Bethesda” was dropped in 1930. That same year the assemblies, using a ship called The Gospel Messenger, moved into towns in Labrador. Eventually the name was changed to Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland and Labrador (PAONL). Its superintendent in 2008 was H. Paul Foster (b. 1954).
The PAONL is a cooperative fellowship of Pentecostal believers who view their mission as discipleship, evangelism, instruction, fellowship, worship, and ministry. Though separate from the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada, the PAONL maintains close fraternal ties with that church and holds to the same doctrinal position. The PAONL has published a number of books, newsletters, and reports.
In 2008 the assemblies reported 125 churches; in 1998 it reported 40,000 members and 425 ministries.
Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland. www.paonl.ca/.
Janes, Burton K. History of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland. St. John’s, Newfoundland: Good Tidings Press, 1997.
PO Box 850, Joplin, MO 64834
The Pentecostal Assemblies of the USA was formed in Chicago, Illinois, in 1919 by a group of Pentecostal leaders. They chose the Rev. John C. Sinclair as their first chairman. The name was changed to the Pentecostal Church of God in 1922. (The words “of America” were added in 1936 and then dropped in 1979.) The church enjoyed a steady growth over the years. It moved its headquarters to Ottumwa, Iowa, in 1927. The following year the department of youth ministries was organized. The expansion was further manifested in the issuance of the first Sunday school material published by the church in 1937. Missionary support began as early as 1919 and was formalized in a church department in 1929.
The church follows the central affirmation of evangelical Pentecostal Christianity: the authority of Scripture, the Trinity, the deity of Christ, and humanity’s need of salvation in Christ. Members practice the ordinances of the Lord’s Supper and baptism by immersion. The church affirms the baptism of the Holy Spirit received subsequent to the new birth (faith in Christ), which is evidenced by the initial sign of speaking in tongues. Foot washing is observed at the discretion of local congregations. Prayer for divine healing of bodily ills is a regular part of church life. The church is not pacifist but supports conscientious objectors in their search for alternative service. It advocates tithing.
The church is headed by the general bishop, assisted by the general secretary, director of world missions, director of Indian missions, director of home missions, director of youth ministries, and director of the women’s ministries. The church has three specialized ministries: King’s Men Fellowship, Military Chaplains, and Senior Christian Fellowship. The church is divided into districts headed by bishops, presbyters, and secretary-treasurers. A general convention of ministers and delegates meets biennially with most district conventions meeting annually.
In 2007 the church reported more than 620,000 constituents in 58 nations, more than 4,825 churches and preaching stations, and more than 6,750 ministers.
Messenger College, Joplin, Missouri.
Worldwide, there are 30 resident Bible schools and 34 extension training centers.
The Pentecostal Messenger • The Missionary Voice
Pentecostal Church of God. www.pcg.org/.
General Constitution and By-Laws. Joplin, MO: Pentecostal Church of God, 1984.
Moon, Elmer Louis. The Pentecostal Church. New York: Carleton Press, 1966.
Wilson, Aaron M. Basic Bible Truth. Joplin, MO: Messenger Press, 1988.
———. Our Story: The History of the Pentecostal Church of God. Jopin: MO:
Messenger Publishing House, 2001.
Current address not obtained for this edition.
The Pentecostal Church of New Antioch is a Trinitarian Pentecostal church, which was founded in 1953 in New Antioch, Ohio, by Marshall M. Bachelor. Bachelor later moved the headquarters to Cleveland, Ohio. At the founding conference, he was elected president and general superintendent for life. The church professes belief in the baptism of the Holy Spirit as evidenced by speaking in tongues; spiritual gifts; the practice of baptism by immersion; the Lord’’’s Supper; foot washing; divine healing; the imminent coming of Jesus Christ; and the resurrection of the dead. The church does not approve of divorce and remarriage.
The church is headed by its president and is assisted by six vice presidents, a secretary, and a treasurer. There is an annual national conference.
Not reported. In 1966 there were approximately 300 ministerial members serving churches across the United States and in Manitoba and Ontario, Canada, Jamaica, and England.
Constitution and Bylaws o the Pentecostal Church of New Antioch, Inc. 1959. 18 pp.
1028 W Rosewood Ave., Spokane, WA 99208
The Pentecostal Evangelical Church was founded in 1936. Its first bishop, G. F. C. Fons, was the moderator of the Pentecostal Church of God of America in the period directly preceding the formation of the new body. Its doctrine is similar to that of the Pentecostal Church of God of America, and its polity is a mixture of congregationalism and episcopal forms. Each local church is autonomous. The general conference meets every two years and elects a general bishop (for a four-year term), a vice-president (for two years), and a district superintendent (as an assistant bishop). Missions are supported in the Philippines, Bolivia, India, and Guyana.
General By-Laws of the Pentecostal Evangelical Church. Bremerton, WA: Pentecostal Evangelical Church, 1966.
Current address not obtained for this edition.
The Pentecostal Evangelical Church of God, National and International was founded at Riddle, Oregon in 1960. It holds to beliefs similar to those of the Assemblies of God. It ordains women to the ministry. A general convocation meets annually.
Not reported. In 1967 there were four congregations and 14 ministers.
Ingathering. • Golden Leaves.
3722 41st Ave., Brentwood, MD 20722
The Seventh Day Pentecostal Church of the Living God was founded in Washington, D.C., by Bishop Charles Gamble, a Pentecostal who had adopted some of the Old Testament practices including the seventh-day Sabbath. Gamble was a Roman Catholic and Baptist before becoming a Pentecostal. The church was incorporated on September 17, 1943, and remained in Washington, D.C., until 2006, when it moved to its Maryland location. In 1991 Elder Ira F. Baity became local pastor.
The church’s mission is to spread the Word of Jesus Christ and provide an opportunity for revival. Church practices include baptism by immersion, the Lord’s Supper as a memorial to the death of Jesus, tithing, and foot washing. The church believes that the seventh day of the week is the true Biblical Sabbath and preaches the entire Gospel from Genesis to Revelations.
Seventh Day Pentecostal Church of the Living God. www.7dpc.com/.
PO Box 6467, Texarkana, TX 75505
Tony Alamo Christian Church (also known as Tony Alamo Christian Ministries) has its origins in the Music Square Church (also known as the Holy Alamo Christian Church Consecrated), incorporated in 1981. The Music Square Church, in turn, had its origins in the Tony and Susan Alamo Christian Foundation, which was begun in the 1960s as a street ministry in Hollywood, California, by Susan Alamo (born Edith Opal Horn; d. 1982), an independent Pentecostal minister, and her husband, Tony Alamo (b. Bernie LaZar Hoffman, 1934), whom she had converted.
During its formative years the church became known as one segment of the Jesus People movement; however, it remained separate organizationally. As much of the larger movement was incorporated into various Baptist and Pentecostal churches, it survived as an independent organization heavily committed to an evangelistic street ministry. In the early 1970s the church became quite controversial and was heavily criticized because of the format its ministry had developed. Church members (associates of the foundation’s ministry) generally worked the streets of Hollywood, inviting potential converts to evening services at the church that had, by that time, been established at Saugus, a rural community about an hour away. The mostly young recruits were taken by bus to Saugus for an evangelistic meeting and meal. Many of those who did convert remained in Saugus to be taught the Bible and become lay ministers.
In 1976, as the foundation grew, it purchased land at Alma and Dyer, Arkansas, where Susan Alamo had grown up. Transferring its headquarters there, the church developed a community of several hundred foundation associates and established printing facilities, a school, and a large tabernacle. As part of its rehabilitation program it began to develop several businesses in which associates (many of whom were former drug addicts) could begin a process of reintegration into society. As the organization expanded, churches (evangelistic centers) were opened in cities around the country (including Nashville, Tennessee; Chicago, Illinois; Brooklyn, New York; and Miami Beach, Florida.) Associated with the church in Nashville, a retail clothing store was opened.
In 1985 a series of actions taken against the church severely disrupted its life. To support itself, the communal-style church had developed a number of businesses. Some former members who had aligned themselves with the anti-cult movement filed a complaint that they should be paid, leading to a series of lawsuits. That same year, the Internal Revenue Service stripped the church of its tax-exempt status. The church went to court to fight the IRS action. As the cases proceeded, Tony Alamo was charged with beating an eleven-year-old boy, and he disappeared.
During the next three years, Alamo remained a fugitive from justice, moving around the country and frequently calling in to radio talk shows. He was finally arrested in 1991. Although most of the charges, including the one of child abuse, were withdrawn, he was tried and convicted in 1994 on charges arising from the church’s loss of tax exemption. The church continued to function in his absence, and he was released in 1998. The Alamo Christian Ministries Internet site refutes the charges of which Alamo was convicted.
The Tony Alamo Christian Church is a Pentecostal church with doctrine similar to the Assemblies of God. It accepts the authority of the Bible (using only the King James Version) and places its emphasis on the preaching of Jesus Christ. The church condemns drug use, homosexuality, adultery, and abortions. Both Susan and Tony Alamo, who were born Jewish, developed a special interest in evangelism of Jews.
The church has developed as an ordered community of people dedicated to evangelism. Converts who wish to remain associated with the church (i.e., to receive its training and participate in its ministry) take a vow of poverty agreeing to turn over all their real property to the church. In return the church agrees to provide the necessities of life (housing, clothes, food, medical assistance), including the education of children through high school. The church is headed by a three-person board presided over by Tony Alamo, the church’s pastor. Alamo and the board set the policy and direction for the ministry.
Church centers are located in Fort Smith and Fouke, Arkansas, and Los Angeles, California. Approximately half the associates of the church reside on church property near Alma. Others reside at the several church centers around the United States. The headquarters complex includes housing units for the associates, a Christian school for grades one through twelve, a large community dining hall, and offices. Periodically associates are sent out on evangelistic tours around the United States, frequently using the established church centers as bases of operation. Services are held daily at each of the church centers and generally free meals are served.
The church maintains a radio ministry, broadcasting messages on 13 stations in Tennessee, Arkansas, New York, California, Georgia, Illinois, and Nevada, as well as four stations in West Africa, one in the Philippines, and worldwide via four short-wave frequencies. Copies of the messages, along with texts of newsletters, are also available atthe church Web site. The church publishes a variety of newsletters and evangelistic tracts that it passes out in the street and mails out nationally and internationally.
Tony Alamo Christian Ministries. www.alamoministries.com/.
Alamo, Tony. The Messiah According to Bible Prophecy: Absolute Proof That Jesus is the Only Way to the Kingdom of Heaven. Texarkana, TX: Tony Alamo Christina ministries Worldwide, 2006.
Ellwood, Robert S., Jr. One Way. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1973.
We’re Your Neighbor. Alma, AK: Holy Alamo Christian Church Consecrated, .
92 Bathgate Dr., Scarborough, ON, Canada M1C 3G7
The United Apostolic Faith Church (UAFC) is one of several churches that grew out of the early Pentecostal movement in the British Isles. In 1908 the Apostolic Faith Church was founded under the leadership of William Oliver Hutchinson (1864–1928). During the next decade the church spread across Great Britain, but it experienced a major schism just as World War I was beginning. In 1916 the congregations in Wales broke away and reorganized as the Apostolic Church. The original organization, which included churches in Scotland and England, reorganized as the United Apostolic Faith Church.
In 1912, prior to the schism, a congregation of the Apostolic Faith Church was established in Toronto, Ontario. After many years as a vital congregation, it all but died out during World War II. Revived in 1947, the congregation associated itself with the United Apostolic Faith Church.
The United Apostolic Faith Church is a Trinitarian Pentecostal body whose doctrine is similar to that of the Assemblies of God. It affirms the free salvation of Christ and the baptism of the Holy Spirit evidenced by speaking in tongues for all believers. It practices baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper. Members believe strongly in divine healing, deliverance, and the casting out of demons. They tithe and attempt to manifest both the gifts and fruits of the Spirit in their daily lives.
The original Apostolic Church emphasized the centrality of the activity of the Holy Spirit who manifested God’s will through the gifts of the Spirit. The leaders tended to seek direction from either prophecy or interpretation and speaking in tongues, especially in the appointment of church leaders and in making decisions about the guidance of the church. That practice led to some degree of fanaticism and underlay the schism of 1916. The UAFC attempted to respond to its critics over the years and developed a biblical form of ministerial leadership based on the fivefold ministry of Ephesians 4:11. The local church is led by a presbytery of a pastor and elders. The church in Toronto is known as Dayspring Christian Fellowship.
In 1997 there were two congregations of the United Apostolic Faith Church in Canada, both in Ontario, with approximately 300 members.
Hathaway, Malcolm R. “The Role of William Oliver Hutchinson and the Apostolic Faith Church in the Formation of British Pentecostal Churches.” Journal of the European Pentecostal Theological Association 16 (1996): 40–57.
Piepkorn, Arthur C. Profiles in Belief: The Religious Bodies of the United States and Canada. Vol. 3. San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1979.
Current address not obtained for this edition.
The United Full Gospel Ministers and Churches was established on May 16, 1951. Arthur H. Collins was the first chairman. Within a few years it had grown to include more than 50 clergy and a number of congregations. The church is governed by four executive officers, one of whom faces election at each annual meeting. The group has an affiliate in India known as the Open Bible Church of God, which was founded by Willis M. Clay, who at one time also served as treasurer of the United Full Gospel Ministers and Churches.
Current address not obtained for this edition.
The United Fundamentalist Church was organized in 1939 by the Rev. Leroy M. Kopp of Los Angeles, California. It was at one time a member of the National Association of Evangelicals and accepts the association’s doctrinal position. In addition, it is Pentecostal, and prophecy and healing are emphasized. Members are expected to believe that the divine healing of the sick is not only to honor the prayer of faith but is to be a sign to confirm the Word as it is preached at home and abroad (Mark 16:15–20). Signs are given until the end of this age, when they will no longer be needed.
The general officers of the United Fundamentalist Church, together with the territorial supervisors and state district superintendents, constitute a council that settles all doctrinal disputes. The Zion Christian Mission is sponsored in Jerusalem. Proselyting other Christian denominations is not practiced. A radio ministry was begun in 1940 by Kopp and still continues. The Rev. E. Paul Kopp has succeeded his father as head of the group.
Not reported. In 1967 there were approximately 250 ministers and missionaries.
Box 65077, North Hill P.O., Calgary, AB, Canada T2N 4T6
U.S. headquarters: 1518 Brookhollow Dr., Santa Ana, CA 92705.
Victory Churches International is a charismatic Pentecostal fellowship of churches that dates to the founding of Victory Christian Church in Lethbridge, Alberta, in 1979 by Dr. George Hill and his wife, Dr. Hazel Hill. By 1988 there were five churches that had grown out of the Hills’ ministry, which led to the creation of Victory Churches of Canada. Through the 1990s the association experienced rapid growth with the founding of almost 50 additional congregations across Canada and the opening of ministries around the world. Victory churches have adopted an organization based on the five-fold ministry of Ephesians 4:11 that includes apostles, prophets, pastors, evangelists, and teachers.
The ideal is to found new churches around the world and provide them with apostolic oversight. The immediate goal is to form apostolic teams that found new congregations in new cities and to identify a key apostolic leader in each country. After congregations are founded it is their job to found new congregations in nearby communities. The fellowship has developed a variety of models for developing new congregations depending on immediate resources.
Church membership agreements set forth the responsibilities of the local church toward the Victory Churches and vice versa. Each church contributes 5 percent of its general income to the national church planting and approximately another 5 percent for overseas missions.
The fellowship follows a mainline Pentecostal theology. It affirms the authority of the Bible as the inspired revelation of God and faith in the Triune God. New believers are invited to make a public declaration of their faith with water baptism. The ordinance of the Lord’s supper is also celebrated. Common to all Pentecostal churches, the fellowship affirms the baptism of the Holy Spirit as an experience distinct from and following the new birth, evidenced initially by speaking in tongues, as a second work of God subsequent to faith in Christ that leads to the believer manifesting spiritual power in public testimony and Christian service. The evangelistic thrust of the fellowship is undergirded in part by a belief that those who have not accepted God’s redemptive work will suffer eternal separation from the Godhead.
Congregations and associated ministries are found in Burma, Cambodia, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, India, Nepal, Thailand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Jamaica, England, Northern Ireland, Poland, and in Africa in Benin, Burundi, Cameroon, Gabon, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Malawi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mozambique, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Togo, and Uganda. Victory Churches International also produces a substantial number of training booklets and audio tapes of teachings by Drs. George and Hazel Hill.
In 2008 the Victory reported 70 churches in Canada, 20 in the United states, and an additional 45 in other countries.
Victory Bible Colleges International, Calgary, AB; Grande Prairie, AB; Owen Sound, ON, Canada.
Victory Bible College International USA, Fountain Valley, California.
Worldwide, there are several Victory Bible colleges located in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean.
Victory Churches International. www.victoryint.org/.
PO Box 262550, Baton Rouge, LA 70826-2550
World Evangelism Fellowship was founded as a result of the break between the Assemblies of God and the Pentecostal preacher Jimmy Swaggart (b. 1935), a televangelist who in 1988 was caught up in a scandal involving a prostitute. Swaggart’s rise to fame had begun with his first radio broadcast in 1969 and the taping of his first television show in 1973. The eruption of the scandal provoked a major crisis, as Swaggart not only headed Jimmy Swaggart Ministries, with its extensive national and international broadcast presence, but also oversaw a Bible college that offered training for leaders for the Assemblies of God. In addition, Swaggart contributed a million dollars per month to the assemblies’ missionary budget. The assemblies imposed a two-year suspension on Swaggart, including a one-year absence from any television shows. Swaggart rejected the penalty and was defrocked by the Assemblies of God. He reorganized his ministry and began anew.
World Evangelism Fellowship emerged as the new structure to bring together the various elements of Swaggart’s continuing activities. Jimmy Swaggart Ministries oversees the telecast, which as of 2008 was broadcast across the United States and in some 50 countries; the SonLife Radio Network, comprising more than 70 radio stations nationwide covering over 5,000 towns, cities, and villages in the U.S. and around the world over the Internet; the Bible college and seminary where missionaries and ministers receive training; and the family worship center, the large congregation Swaggart pastors in Baton Rouge. Swaggart continues to conduct revival meetings both in the United States and overseas.
World Evangelism Fellowship offers credentials for lay Christian workers and licensed ministers, whom it defines as people who demonstrate clear evidence of a divine call on their lives and who commit themselves to preaching the gospel. It also provides for ordination of ministers who previously have held a license to preach and who have been engaged in active ministry long enough to demonstrate proof of a calling and proficiency. Licenses and ordination, as well as charters for local churches, are provided by the fellowship’s credentials committee.
The fellowship oversees three national programs: Powerhouse, the children’s ministry; Christian Cadet Corps for boys and young men; and Crossfire, for youths between the ages of 12 and 22.
Through his many years of ministry, Swaggart has written numerous books and booklets and has made many recordings (total recording sales exceeded 15 million worldwide as of 2008). Jimmy Swaggart Ministries makes available those writings that remain in print as well as a continuous stream of new items (including sermon and camp-meeting CDs and preaching DVDs), as well as cassette tapes and videos of sermons and Bible studies.
World Evangelism Bible College and Seminary. Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Family Christian Academy, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Jimmy Swaggart Ministries: World Evangelism Fellowship. www.jsm.org/explore.cfm/familyworshipctr/worldevangelism.
Fontaine, Charles R., and Lynda K. Fontaine. Jimmy Swaggart: To Obey God Rather than Men. Berryville, AR: Kerusso Co., 1989.
Lundy, Hunter. Let Us Prey: The Public Trial of Jimmy Swaggart. Columbus, MS: Genesis Press, 1999.
Swaggart, Jimmy. To Cross a River. Attleboro, MA: Logos Associates, 1979.
———. Armageddon: The Future of Planet Earth. Baton Rouge, LA: Jimmy Swaggart Ministries, 1984.
4595 Gender Rd., Canal Winchester, OH 43110
Breakthrough with Rod Parsley, PO Box 100, Columbus, OH 43216-0100.
World Harvest Church, founded in 1977, is the 12,000-member megachurch pastored by Rod Parsley (b. 1957), a poplar Pentecostal/charismatic leader and televangelist. As a young man, Parsley accepted the tutoring of a prominent Pentecostal leader, Lester Sumrall (1913–1996). The church operates from a mainline Pentecostal perspective that affirms the Bible as the infallible Word of God, the Trinity, the saving work of Christ, and the baptism of the Holy Spirit. It understands that Christ’s redemptive work includes provisions for the healing of the human body in answer to believing prayer. While Parsley is the head of all ministries at the church, those who feel they are called to serve within the organization may work as elders, deacons, or lay leaders. Current facilities of the World Harvest Church include a 5,200-seat auditorium.
Breakthrough with Rod Parsley handles Parsley’s broadcast ministry and produces his television show, Breakthrough, which is carried on 1,400 stations in North America and is shown in translation worldwide, including in the Middle East. Bridge of Hope, the world missionary arm, combines evangelism with various humanitarian programs.
Over the years, many otherwise independent ministers have been attracted to Parsley’s ministry and others have received training at the World Harvest Bible College. In the 1990s, in response to a perceived need to build relationships and break barriers to fellowship, Parsley founded the World Harvest Church Ministerial Fellowship. It ordains pastors and accepts into membership pastors previously ordained elsewhere. The fellowship sponsors an annual Raise the Standard Pastors and Church Workers Conference.
In 2004 Parsley initiated the Center for Moral Clarity, an arm of the World Harvest Church that devotes itself to promoting public policy based on biblical teachings.
In 2008 the World Harvest Ministerial Fellowship reported 155 ministerial members in the United States and 2 in Canada. The group had 12,000 members in total.
World Harvest Bible College, Columbus, Ohio.
Harvest Preparatory School, Columbus, Ohio.
World Harvest Church. whc.rodparsley.com.
World Harvest Ministerial Fellowship. whcmf.rodparsley.com/.
Parsley, Rod. The Day before Eternity. Carol Stream, IL: Creation House, 1989.
———. No More Crumbs: Your Invitation to Sit and Feast at the King’s Table. Carol Stream, IL: Creation House, 1989.
———. On the Brink: Breaking through Every Obstacle into the Glory of God. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2000.
Box 163000, Irving, TX 75016-3000
The World Healing Fellowship (WHF), an association of Christian ministers, pastors, church workers, missionaries, and educators, is part of the global ministry of Pentecostal televangelist Toufik Benedictus “Benny” Hinn (b. 1952). Hinn founded the WHF in 1990, and it now operates in 190 countries of the world. The primary purpose of the WHF is to provide fellowship and resources for churches and Christian leaders and groups who identify with Benny Hinn’s worldwide mission.
Benny Hinn was born in Jaffa, Israel. His earliest church experience was Greek Orthodox but he also studied at French Catholic schools in Israel. The Hinn family moved to Toronto, Canada, in 1968 and Benny became part of the Charismatic Christian community. His ministry started in Oshawa, Ontario, in 1974, and over the next two years, his work was influenced by the healing ministry of Kathryn Kuhlman (1907–1976). After her death, he claimed to be continuing her work and developed worship and healing services patterned on those Kuhlman had conducted.
For many years Hinn’s ministry was located in Orlando, Florida, where he served as pastor of the Orlando Christian Center. He resigned his pastorate in 1999 and moved to southern California, and then moved his ministry’s world headquarters to suburban Dallas, Texas. He announced plans to build a new World Healing Center, but as of 2008 the center had not been opened.
Hinn holds evangelistic campaigns worldwide, and his daily television show This Is Your Day is seen in some 200 countries.
Hinn’s ministry is among several televangelist ministries whose finances have come under scrutiny by U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee. In 2008 Sen. Grassley was organizing hearings on possible financial misconduct by these tax-exempt organizations. As this encyclopedia went to press, no specific charges or findings had emerged from those hearings.
World Healing Fellowship. www.healingfellowship.com/.
Benny Hinn Ministries. www.bennyhinn.org/.
Hinn, Benny. Good Morning, Holy Spirit. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2004.
1285 Millsap Rd., Fayetteville, AR 72701
Worldwide Missionary Evangelism (WME) was founded in 1956 by the prominent African missionary Morris Plotts (1906–1997) of the Assemblies of God. The organization had operated for many years as a missionary sending agency. In 1971 Plotts suggested that WME broaden its program and become active in home ministries and, more important, provide charters for churches and credentials for ministers in the United States, quite apart from the Assemblies of God. With that step WME became, in effect, a new Pentecostal denomination. Active in the transformation were the Revs. W. S. McMasters, Howard Holton, and Kemp C. Holden, Jr. In 2008 Dale Yerton served as chairman of WME.
WME is a Pentecostal body whose statement of faith closely resembles that of the Assemblies of God. Its stated goal is to promote fellowship among ministers, to counsel and train, those who are called to serve as ministers, and to provide licensing and ordination for qualifying inquirers. Members in good standing for one year may apply for status as an ordained minister. The organization meets annually for a fall conference and hosts an annual missionary conference. Its work is carried out through three committees that oversee coordination, missions, and credentials. The organization sponsors missionary projects both in the United States and abroad. The credentials committee oversees the work of the ministry and ensures that all who hold WME licenses abide by the group’s code of ethics. Each February the ministers of WME meet in Nashville, Tennessee, where they experience fellowship and are taught by some of the nation’s leading pastors and ministers.
Not reported. Churches and ministers associated with WME are scattered across the United States. Missionary activity is supported in Guatemala, Ecuador, Jamaica, Italy, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Mexico, Israel, and Egypt.
Worldwide Missionary Evangelism. www.wmeinc.org/.